Gold Country Toy Run next weekend; register now for Winter Fun Fest http://t.co/AQzyq8mRlG
Thanks to all of you who attended the recent public open house meetings held in the East Bay Area to detail the Draft Preferred Concept for the Carnegie State Vehicular Recreation Area General Plan (DPC). Draft Preferred Concept.
Members of extreme anti-OHV groups were also there to try to impose their closure agenda on the OHV community and DPC planning team. Over the last seven years, those closure advocates have worked with East Bay Regional Parks on a massive and fraudulent campaign to build political support for an outright ban of OHV use on the Tesla property. They have been making weekly, if not daily, visits to the offices of State Senator Mark DeSaulnier and Assemblymember Joan Buchanan demanding legislation to enact an outright ban of OHV use at Tesla.
California State Parks will conduct two public workshops as part of the comprehensive public involvement program for the Ocotillo Wells SVRA General Plan and EIR. The format of both workshops will be identical.
These are Open House events – drop by anytime, and stay as long as you’d like!
News of the long awaited Adopt a Trail program for the world famous Rubicon Trail is out. The Rubicon Trail Foundation is pleased to announce that the El Dorado County Board of Supervisors has approved the Adopt a Trail Program that has been in the works for over 10 years. Adopt a Trail allows clubs, organizations, or even an individual or unsanctioned group to adopt a section of the trail to do maintenance and cleanup work. With the help of Friends of the Rubicon and the Rubicon Trail Foundation, this program can give trail users a sense of ownership of the trail. As current President of the Rubicon Trail Foundation and one of the charter members of the Friends of the Rubicon, I’m happy to see this actually happen. It makes all the long nights working on it worthwhile.
Reprinted from the Needles Desert Star, August 12, 2013
NEEDLES — Asked what folks in Needles could help Congressman Paul Cook with, field representative Dawn Rowe quickly answered, “the Johnson Valley National Off-Highway Vehicle Recreation Area.”
Introduced as H.R. 1676 in April, the plan was added to the National Defense Authorization Act approved by the U.S. House of Representatives on June 14. “The end goal is to ensure that the NDAA still has this Johnson Valley language in it when it reaches the President’s desk later this year,” Cooks said at the time. “A lot can happen as the NDAA moves through the Senate, so it’s essential for supporters of my proposal to let Senators know how important it is to protect Johnson Valley for recreational use.”
I try to avoid preaching to the choir but I feel that I need to bring this to your attention. As some of you may know, I am also a member of the "Friends of the Inyo," our local green organization. Their motto is "Preservation, Exploration, Stewardship." I agree with all three, but basically disagree with how they generally go about "preservation." Their recent newsletter highlights the Forest Planning process that is underway and encourages their members to get involved. In fact, they received a grant from the Conservation Alliance, and with it they state "we will engage in the Inyo National Forest planning process in ways that ensure the protection of the wild and incredible places of the Eastern Sierra." Again, I think we all have a lot in common but often disagree on how you "ensure the protection."
This new Forest Plan is a complete overhaul of the current plan and something that we will have to live with for many years. Inyo is one of the first National Forests to do this and it will be a precedent for all other Forests. I can understand that people are reluctant to get involved with a federal bureaucracy so I recommend the following: if you do not want to participate in the process, then support those that represent your position in the planning process. In the past I have recommended CORVA, Blue Ribbon Coalition and Calif. Association of Four Wheel Drive Clubs (aka Cal 4 Wheel or CA4WDC). Now, I strongly recommend the CA4WDC. They specifically represent our sport, four-wheeling, and their Natural Resources Consultant, John Stewart, has attended many of the local meetings regarding the Inyo National Forest. John is involved in our local issues and is very knowledgeable about the Forest Planning process. You can get more information at Cal4wheel.com.
Mike Johnston, Eastern Sierra 4WD Club
Reprinted from E&E, June 17, 2013
The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee tomorrow will seek to advance a dozen bills involving public lands from a North Carolina seashore to an Alaskan rainforest.
Measures include bills to designate new wilderness in western Nevada, Colorado's San Juan Mountains and eastern Oregon's high desert, each of which is strongly backed by conservation groups.
Members will also vote on bills to convey timber in the Tongass National Forest to an Alaska Native corporation and allow more off-highway vehicle access to the Cape Hatteras National Seashore -- measures that have attracted considerable controversy.
"We're pleased to see the wilderness bills go forward," said Tim Mahoney of the Pew Campaign for America's Wilderness.